Going on an Alone Trip to Aru Valley Pahalgam Kashmir is challenging. But, I will try to get things sorted for this stunning long journey.
I request you keep yourself connected, have a seat, and bring some coffee and chips to eat because this will be a complete Aru Valley Kashmir guide.
Therefore, stay connected till the end.
Let us get started then,
How to Reach from Delhi to Aru Valley Pahalgam Kashmir by Road?
To reach Aru Valley by road, first, you have to get to Jammu ➡️ Srinagar, ➡️ Pahalgam.
You have to proceed order-wise to get to the Aru Valley Pahalgam.
So, I will be dividing the journey into three parts.
How to Reach from Delhi to Jammu
The Delhi to Jammu distance is 594km and can get covered:
1. Delhi to Jammu by Bus
Delhi has bus connectivity to all its neighboring states and towns. For example, you can board an overnight Volvo or an Ordinary bus from Kashmiri Gate for Delhi to Jammu.
The ordinary bus fare will be around Rs.640/- per person.
The J&K state buses also run on this route.
Almost every day, the buses run on this route. Therefore, you will not face any issues in departure or finding the place for your bus to Jammu from Delhi.
2. Delhi to Jammu by Train
Daily trains run from NDLS to Jammu Railway Station. The train journey will be relaxing, but you need to book the tickets almost months back because getting the AC/Confirmed tickets right on the spot will not be easy.
Suppose you are willing to travel by train. Then, you have to plan your journey months back to get your train tickets confirmed.
3. Delhi to Jammu by Flight
The Delhi to Jammu flight option will be the fastest to reach your destination. Various flights daily operate on this route.
The train or bus will be convenient if you want to travel cheaply. But, on the other hand, the flight will make you reach your destination quickly.
How to Reach from Jammu to Srinagar
Upon reaching Jammu,
Your next aim will be to reach Srinagar.
Jammu to Srinagar by Bus
The state buses run from Jammu to Srinagar daily. So it would take another 9-10 hrs to reach Srinagar from Jammu by bus. But it will not be possible for the rest of the people to travel straight away after the tiring Delhi to Jammu journey.
So, you might look for an option of staying a night at Jammu and traveling the next day to Srinagar.
Jammu to Srinagar by Shared Taxi
If by chance you are not able to find the direct bus. Then, you can take a shared cab to Srinagar. The shared taxi will take around 8hrs and will drop you either at a fixed spot or your desired location in Srinagar.
The Jammu to Srinagar shared taxi fare will be around Rs.1200 per person for Innova & Rs.1000/- per person for Tavera.
If you had a plan to explore Srinagar first before moving your journey ahead? Here you can spend a memorable 24hrs in Srinagar.
How to Reach from Srinagar to Pahalgam
Upon reaching Srinagar, our third motive would be to get to Pahalgam from Srinagar.
There are direct buses from Srinagar to Pahalgam.
Suppose you are traveling in the month of Amarnath Ji Yatra. Then you might face some difficulties in finding the direct buses to Pahalgam.
The cost of hiring a private taxi alone will be high as well.
The Srinagar to Pahalgam distance is around 90km.
If the bus option is not feasible, you must divide your journey from Srinagar to Pahalgam. Shared cabs are available, taking almost 7-8 people per cab.
1. Srinagar to Anantnag/Islamabad by shared taxi
That will be your first part of traveling from Srinagar to Pahalgam on a shared taxi.
You have to reach the HP petrol pump near Jan Bakers. It is a few minutes of walk away from Dal gate. A high five if you are staying near Dal Lake or in a houseboat that will be approx. 15-20 min. of walk away.
The cab will charge Rs.100 from Srinagar to Anantnag/Islamabad, and it will be 55-56km of a smooth drive.
Do not get confused in Anantnag/Islamabad – You can opt for any cabs.
2. Anantnag/Islamabad to Pahalgam by shared taxi
That will be the second part of traveling from Anantnag/Islamabad to Pahalgam.
You will get dropped at the Anantnag taxi stand and take a shared taxi to Pahalgam again.
The cab will charge Rs.80, the driving distance will be around 40km, and the taxi will drop you in Pahalgam.
How to Reach Aru Valley from Pahalgam
Pahalgam stands at an elevation of 2740m. It is much higher than Srinagar, which is 1585m.
If you can recall, you have changed almost a total of 4 times shared cabs. Pretty long?
Okay, now since you have reached Pahalgam. You will be just a few km away from arriving at the magical place, Aru Valley.
Again, you have to take a shared cab from Pahalgam to Aru Valley.
The Pahalgam to Aru Valley distance is 12km.
You can take a shared taxi from outside the taxi stand in Pahalgam.
The Pahalgam to Aru Valley taxi fare will be around Rs.50 per person for the outsiders & Rs.30 per person for the locals. The fare system stands entirely made by the locals living there.
There is also a possibility that the shared taxi fare might have increased from Pahalgam to Aru Valley.
But let us move forward,
The shared taxi will take around 45-50 min. to cover the 12km distance to reach Aru Valley. The shared taxi drivers will not move unless the cab gets full.
The road from Pahalgam to Aru Valley will be scenic. Do not forget to sit on the window side because you will always be looking out. Like I was looking outside the natural beauty.
The changing of so many buses sounds hectic. But it will be fun & full of experience journey. It will be a Majestic long road trip to heaven on earth.
I am sure you had not changed that many buses before, and shared cabs to reach your destination.
Aru Valley Pahalgam
You will realize this upon reaching Aru Valley Pahalgam. Every step that you had taken was worth the effort. You will be mesmerized by the landscape and natural beauty of Aru Valley.
Please have a look at the video on Aru Valley, and do not forget to subscribe to my Youtube Channel (Pretty new there) –
Aru Valley Pahalgam is the base for many adventure activities like trekking in the summers and skiing in winters. I hope you know that you can also do mountaineering & winter sports courses in Pahalgam. That includes Skiing & Trekking as well.
Hotel and Guesthouse Options in the Aru Valley
After reaching Aru Valley Pahalgam, you can first search for a place to stay.
Listed below are the Aru Valley Hotels and Guesthouse options available –
1. Friends Guest House
The cab will drop you right in the center of Aru Valley & on the corner, you will see a friend’s tea stall. The next to this is Friends Guest House.
Just as the name suggests, make friends from all over the world.
You will find a room between Rs.800 – Rs.1200 per night (can be subject to change depending upon season).
2. Fimi Hotel
The Hotel Fimi looks good from all the hotels in Aru. But it was under construction when I went to Aru Valley. Hopefully, it will open soon. You can always check on this.
3. Hotel Milky Way
Milky way is next to hotel Fimi.
There are 4-5 hotels and guesthouses in the Aru Valley.
4. Rohella Guest House
A walk into the village, and you will find this guest house on the opposite line of Friends Guest House in the end.
5. Aru Heights Guest House
I can write a complete article on Aru Heights because I stayed here during my visit to Aru Valley.
The Aru height stands located on the route to Lidderwat. A room will cost you around Rs.500 – Rs.1000. A family manages this guesthouse and plays the role of everyone, from cleaning to cooking; they do everything by themselves.
Hotel Alpine and Restaurant
A hotel by J&K tourism department corporation,
Have you thought of living in a home surrounded by mountains and greenery?
Your wish has just come true. Hotel alpine is located right at the point of attraction.
A room at Hotel alpine for a night will cost Rs.1315. Yes, it is a luxury hotel, and the Decision depends upon person to person and their needs.
Basic stay VS luxury stay.
Q. Why is Aru Valley Majorly known to foreign tourists?
A. The answer I got from my personal experience is summarized in the points below –
- A Majority of foreign tourists from Israel visit there.
- Israel people love a few parts of India. You must have already witnessed Kasol, Dharamkot, McLeod Ganj, and many more in the Himalayas.
- Important factors are – Cheap accommodation like you will get a room in Aru in-between Rs.300 – Rs500. Low-cost good food, adventure activities like trekking (As I told Aru is the base for many treks), peaceful surroundings in the foothills of the mountain, and away from any city bustle.
These are some reasons that make Aru Valley Pahalgam a famous tourist destination.
Weather in the Aru Valley
Weather in the Himalayas is highly unpredictable. I visited at the starting of July, call it summers & pre-monsoon season.
- The days are very sunny as you will sweat if you keep walking for a few minutes.
- Evening brings rain and cold wind.
- The nights are cold and windy.
In winter, people shift to the lower region because the place gets filled with snow.
You cannot predict the weather by looking at the sky. Therefore, advisable to carry extra precautions.
For e.x- half t-shirts and shorts, a raincoat and umbrella, jacket and warm caps.
Best Season to Visit Aru Valley Pahalgam
The best season is undoubtedly the start of summer, from April to July. But, then, post-monsoon, that is Sept to Nov.
Monsoon season brings landslides and roadblocks. So it is not an ideal time to visit.
I hope many of you have seen the video footage of the landslides on the Jammu – Srinagar highway over the years. It is highly not recommended to go in monsoon season.
Getting Around Aru Valley
You can explore Aru Valley on your foot.
It is a small place and generally takes max to max 2hr – 3hr to explore the whole area unless and until you indulge in any fun/adventure activities.
Also Read, 24 Hours Traveled, 5 Vehicles Changed to Reach Aru Valley (A Hidden Gem)
List of Adventure Activities
Aru Valley Pahalgam is full of adventurous activities like:
You can also do pony rides if you are not a fan of trekking.
You can camp under the stars or lie down on the ground fields.
Must-Try in Aru Valley
Kashmiri Kahwa is a must-try during your visit.
Let me tell you what did I had told you while ordering Kashmiri Kahwa–
Me – One Keshwa, please
Person – Looked strangely; what Keshwa here ?.
Person – After 2 sec, it is Kahwa.
Me – OH, Yes
Medicine Store in Aru Valley
(I know that Aru Travel Guide is going deep. But I am sharing my experience, and that will be going to help you).
If you get any injuries during adventuring or are feeling low, then Riaz medical store is a medical store.
Local people say that he provides good medicines.
After the trek, my whole body was in pain & I went to Riaz medical store to get some medication.
After 3-4hr, I felt much better, like I could go again for another trek.
Things to do in Aru Valley Pahalgam with Friends and Family
Outing in Aru Valley is a magnificent decision, along with family. Let’s see what all you can do with your family in Aru –
1. Trekking to Lidderwat/Tarsar Lake
If you and your friends & family are fond of treks, Trek to Lidderwat might fascinate you. Hence, if you want to experience a crystal clear, white lake sheet, trek further to Tarsar lake ( You might not see an ice lake post-summer).
- Trek to Lidderwat will be of 1 day on foot; you can camp there and come back the next day.
- You can also opt for horses; it will take one day, and you can come back the same day on horses.
You have to hire a guide in both cases.
If you want to trek further till Tarsar lake, you have to take some time off because it takes two nights and 3 days to get back to your Aru Valley base.
2. Enjoy a Pony Ride
Hip-Hop on a pony as the guide will take you across beautiful green parts of the valley and enjoy the Kashmir landscape.
3. Spend Time in J&K Tourism park
Hotel Alpine has a big garden where you can chill with your family, click pictures, and play cricket. It is a perfect outing park in the valley where you do not feel like going home.
4. Morning Walk in the Quiet Village of Aru
Do not make any assumptions about the morning walk as it is a village walk where-
Horses are tied in ropes,
People are leaving with goats.
Mobile Connectivity in Aru Valley
I am glad that there is no connectivity in the Aru Valley. But to be honest, I had faced difficulties reaching out to my home.
Every time I asked the locals to give me their phones for a few-minute call.
Only BSNL works in the Aru Valley and no other network operator. No Airtel, Voda, or other network provider is available, but JIO is coming soon in Aru.
*Note – Remember that only postpaid sim works in Jammu & Kashmir.
Budget Required for Aru Valley Pahalgam
It is hard to tell the budget required because everybody has different preferences.
But as a person who would prefer staying in a luxury hotel compared to the other budgeted hotels. Then, the difference is bound to arise.
Let us try to calculate the budget for 2 days for a single person in Aru Valley Pahalgam –
- Reaching Aru Valley from Delhi by road and return would be around Rs. 1700-1800 (one way)
- Stay and food – Rs 2300 – Rs 2400
- Any adventure activity can not predict here because it varies.
- A pony horse ride to Green top = Rs. 350 and a trek to Tarsar around = Rs 5000 – 6000.
On an average = Rs. 6000 – Rs 7000 (Including Adventure activities like pony rides around the valley)
And Rs. 10,000 -Rs.11,000 (Including Adventure activities like longer treks).
That takes us to the end of the Aru Valley Kashmir.
If you are visiting, try to keep this place the same as nature has offered.
I hope that I have covered every necessary aspect that you will be required to know.
If still, something is missing, comment down below. I will let you know, or you can DM me on Instagram.
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Happy and Safe Traveling.
Until then, I’ll see you on the roads.